Many years ago, in the last century, I used to work in a dead-end office in Edinburgh. After 4 years in the job, I had had enough of wage slavery. Enough of going to work on icy-cold dark mornings. So I handed in my resignation.
When people in the office asked me what I was going to do when I left the job, I told them the truth - I was going on the dole. Most of them reacted in the same way - the shock! The horror!
"How can you do nothing?"
"You'll have no money to spend!"
"How will you you fill your day?"
"You'll have no reason to get out of bed"
That was when it dawned on me that most people need to be told what to do with their time. Otherwise they go to pieces. I'm not sure of the technical term for such a person, but I think it ends in -heid.
As my leaving day drew near, they took the usual collection of money to buy me a leaving present. The office manager asked me what I wanted them to buy with the money. She expected me to say something like a new job interview suit. I told her - an electric blanket to warm my bed, and a tea-maker so I don't have to get out of bed for my morning cuppa.
At the presentation ceremony, I thanked everyone for the blanket and tea-maker, and assured them I would be reminded of them every morning as I had breakfast in a warm bed.
As it turned out, the year I spent on the dole was one of the busiest in my life - visiting people; spending days in libraries to find out things I had always wanted to know about; getting fit; teaching myself programming; travelling in the Highlands; applying for courses anywhere but Edinburgh. No offence to Edinbrovians.
If there are any British taxpayers reading this, I'd like to thank them for sponsoring me for that wonderful year. What a fortunate creature I was!